Monday, June 13, 2011

It's not an ordinary Story

These days, a story which is in the limelight of every financial newspaper is the story of Rajat Gupta, a story of Rags to Riches, how a simple person from Calcutta transformed his destiny to become the first ever Indian born CEO of Transglobal Firm ‘Mc-Kinsey’.
But, when I read the recent articles about him, few questions come to my mind…
·         What is the limit of  money , how much do I actually require
·         Where’s the education system is lacking, doesn’t being ethical and doing right, part of being an educated personnel’.
·         At most what can a child at 18 can dream of…
Do ask these questions before proceeding further
Reading about all this, I started thinking whether Socrates would still stand by this quotation written by him “Even if we know we can get away by doing the crime, Even if no one ever finds what we are up to. It’s our vices that affect us more than it hurt our victims”.
Yes, this story is really not an ordinary story because the last time I read about Rajat Gupta was when he was elected to the position of Director in Mc-Kinsey and was interviewed by Business Today and at that time reading about his hardships and the way he progressed was really inspiring.
Rajat Gupta is a person who would definitely be an idol of many students, a symbol of success and its for sure that if you have known his story a year past then you can only be astonished, inspired or envy him.
It’s not an ordinary story because Rajat really didn’t used any malice or wrong practice to reach this top, but he worked hard day and night and didn’t get disturbed by the circumstances.
Rajat Gupta Background:-
His father was a freedom fighter who died when he was 16 and his mother died when he was 18, but he studied hard to get in IIT-D securing 15th rank in IIT-JEE .He made a tough decision to join Harvard leaving a high paying job at ITC when all his friends were going for Job. Most of the recruiters were not talking to him in Harvard, as he was on a student Visa and Mc-Kinsey rejected him because he didn’t have any experience. But due to the recommendation of his professor Walter Salmon he was re-interviewed and selected directly for Mc-Kinsey.
      He became the Head of Mc-Kinsey in 1998 which was also the first time that a non white was given such an elite post. He remained there till 2007 i.e. completing full 3-3 yrs terms which is the Maximum for a person to serve as a head of Mc-Kinsey.
Beside, this he was also in the advisory board of Harvard and the Kellogg School of Management and also a co-founder of Indian School of Business. He did lots of Philanthropic work with like of Dr. Manmohan Singh, Warren Buffet, Bill & Melinda Foundation and gave a new direction to American Indian Foundation (AIF).
People use to describe him as a soft at heart and a smart person.
He has been convicted by the Securities and Exchange Control (SEC) for passing on confidential information to hedge fund Billionaire ‘Raj Rajaratnam’, who runs a ‘Galleon Group’ and is currently behind bars.
He is also convicted of running his own firm by the name of ‘New Silk Route Partners’ and also providing private consultancy to firms when employed by Mc-Kinsey.
But, if you read the story that is aptly covered by wall street Journal and Economic Times and hear the tapes between him and Raj Rajaratam you will find that somewhere he was aware of his moves which is shown by the obscurity of his thoughts while talking to Raj .Secondly, he is a person who is so much involved with philanthropy and everyone close to him praises him so much..So is the money which motivated him so much.
As said by Terry Connelty, Dean of Agene School of Business when asked about the question of   ‘Why Rajat did so?’ he said: - “you can never underestimate the seductive power of zeroes added to numbers. If you’re in hedge fund mangers’ circle and you’re not rich like them, you can start asking ‘why can’t I get that? I am every bit as smart “
Motives are still not Clear:-
But the people who are close to Raj and Gupta and who know the details of the deal believe that Gupta did not seem to profit much from the tips. Some conjecture that he may have passed information to Rajaratnam because of the hope for future profits. If that's true, and it’s not at all clear that it is, how much did he expect to make?  
So, verdict is not yet out but why? Did a person like ‘Rajat Gupta’ indulge in such crimes? Doesn’t it show the human tendency of never ending greed? Doesn’t it make us ponder to thing about the values and the education we are imbibing our students with?
We really don’t know what the verdict would be... but one thing is certain it really made me think about my actions and where they are going to lead me…

P.S.:- I do hope that Rajat Gupta do have some powerful argument for his actions because irrespective of whatever crimes has been imposed on him, I still see him as my idol.

With Inputs from article from WSJ and Economic Times

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